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Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal


  1. Hillary's Send Them Back to Send a Message Deterrence Strategy Has High Human Cost

    by , 05-23-2016 at 09:42 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)

    Remember when Hillary Clinton said you have to send refugee children back to send a message? Turns out that deterrence strategy comes at a high human cost. Who woulda thunkit?

    Via The American Immigration Counsel:

    Yet, a report released today by the American Immigration Council reveals that such a strategy has an extremely high human cost.
    Between February and May, 2016, the American Immigration Council interviewed eight individuals who were deported (or whose partners were deported) from the United States after being detained in family detention facilities. These women (or in two of the cases, their partners) shared their experiences—both describing what has happened to them and their children since returning to their country and recounting the detention and deportation process from the United States.

    First-hand accounts from Central American women and their family members interviewed for this project reveal the dangerous and bleak circumstances of life these women and their children faced upon return to their home countries, as well as serious problems in the deportation process. The testimonies describe how women are living in hiding, fear for their own and their children’s lives, have minimal protection options, and suffer the consequences of state weakness and inability to ensure their safety in the Northern Triangle. The stories presented in the report are those of a fraction of the women and children who navigate a formidable emigration-detention-deportation process in their pursuit of safety. The process and systems through which they passed only contribute to the trauma, violence, and desolation that many Central American families already endured in their home country.

    Day after day, women and children seeking protection in the United States are sent back to the Northern Triangle of Central America (Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador), and, consequently, forced to face the same dire conditions that they fled—or worse. The Northern Triangle is one of the most dangerous regions in the world and in recent years the influence of complex organized criminal groups has grown in the region, driving up murder rates, gender-based violence, and other forms of serious harm. It is also a region devastated by poverty and food insecurity. This precarious socioeconomic context, in turn, contributes to a vicious circle of socio-economic exclusion and violence. As has been previously documented, poverty and inequality are likely to increase this region’s vulnerability to certain types of crime (e.g., gang activity).

    Click here to read the report.

    Updated 05-23-2016 at 09:47 AM by MKolken

  2. ACLU Sues Obama Admin for Denying Due Process to Immigrants

    by , 05-23-2016 at 09:08 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Via the ACLU:

    The ACLU filed habeas petitions on behalf of more than two dozen families who fled horrific violence and persecution in Central America and whose applications for asylum in the United States were denied after a cursory expedited review.

    The government is arguing that these families have no recourse to U.S. courts even if, as in their cases, the process that led the government to try to deport them was flawed and the decision is incorrect. As stated in the petitioners’ brief, “[t]here has never been a time in this country when noncitizens on U.S. soil have not been able to challenge the legality of their removal.”

    The petitioners in this case include:

    • A mother and her 2-year-old daughter from El Salvador who fled to escape severe physical abuse at the hands of the mother’s ex-partner (her daughter’s father), who raped the mother and threatened to kill her.
    • A mother and her 7-year-old son who fled Honduras to escape from a gang leader who threatened to kill the mother and abduct her son if she continued to resist his sexual advances.
    • A mother and her 7-year-old son who fled El Salvador to escape from death threats from a deadly gang against whom the mother’s partner (and son’s father) cooperated with local police.

    These families were ordered deported after a brief interview with a government officer that was seriously flawed. These mothers and children never even had a full opportunity to present their claim to an immigration judge, yet the government seeks to return them to the persecution from which they fled.

    The government’s position — that families cannot challenge their deportation in U.S. courts — would upend centuries of law recognizing that individuals on U.S. soil may challenge the validity of their deportation orders. It would also give the government unfettered authority to ignore Congress’ goal of ensuring that bona fide asylum-seekers are provided a full hearing on their asylum claims and ultimately receive protection in the U.S. if they prevail at the hearing. Absent judicial review in cases like these, the government could deport hundreds of families who are entitled to asylum to abuse, rape, and death in their home counties.

    The petitions filed on behalf of each family charge the government with violating their rights under the Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution, the Immigration and Nationality Act, the Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act of 1998, the United Nations Convention Against Torture, the Administrative Procedure Act, and the implementing regulations of these statutes.

    These families were detained at a detention center in Berks County, Pennsylvania. Nineteen of these families remain detained, some of whom have been held in detention for more than eight months.

    Their petitions were filed in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and were consolidated to allow for consideration of the threshold question of whether federal courts have jurisdiction to review the petitioners’ claims.

    The district court concluded that it lacked jurisdiction and that decision was appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, which is currently considering these claims on expedited basis. The government refused to stay its removal during the pendency of proceedings before the Third Circuit, but the Third Circuit rejected the government’s arguments in opposition to a stay and ordered that their removal be stayed pending resolution of the appeal.

    TIMELINE: First habeas cases filed in November 2015. District court ruling in February 2015. Federal appeals court arguments on May 19, 2016.

    Updated 05-23-2016 at 09:18 AM by MKolken

  3. Obama Admin to Isolate Transgender Immigrants in Remote Rural For-Profit Prison

    by , 05-23-2016 at 08:31 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    The Prairieland Detention Center, a 700 bed facility, will be run by the for-profit private prison company Emerald Correctional Management, and is set to be open for operation this November in Alvarado, Texas. I wonder if Emerald Correctional has donated to the Clinton campaign?


    The new detention center in Alvarado is located in a relatively small town of 4,000 residents about 40 miles southeast of Dallas. State officials say the estimated $42 million detention center project will generate more than 100 new jobs in Johnson County, according to the local paper Cleburne Times-Review.

    Lawyers and advocates for transgender women say they’re concerned immigration attorneys may hesitate to take cases with clients in such a rural area.

    “It’s trickier and more complicated for lawyers and advocates to gain access and get notices of folks being released,” said Noyola, of the Transgender Law Center.

    Click here for the rest of the story.

    Updated 06-06-2016 at 03:26 PM by MKolken

  4. Huge Increase in Deaths per 10,000 Border Crossers

    by , 05-23-2016 at 08:04 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Via The Arizona Daily Star:

    So far this fiscal year, which started in October, more than 50 bodies have been found. And the deadliest months for migrants are coming.

    In fiscal year 2015, there were 21 deaths per 10,000 apprehensions in the Tucson Sector. That year alone, remains of 135 migrants were found in the desert, while the Border Patrol reported a little more than 63,000 arrests.

    That’s more than double the rate in 2010, the deadliest year on record. Until 2007, the death rate for border crossers never exceeded 4 per 10,000 apprehensions.

    Click here for the original source of the story.

    Updated 05-23-2016 at 09:21 AM by MKolken

  5. Federal Judge Orders Sanctions to Justice Department Lawyers for Lying

    by , 05-20-2016 at 07:29 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    From the New York Times:

    A federal judge in Texas on Thursday excoriated the Justice Department, demanding ethics classes for the department’s lawyers and ordering other sanctions for those who argued the case involving President Obama’s immigration executive actions.

    He also ordered the government to produce a list of about 100,000 immigrants who entered illegally and who are participating in a government program that protects them from deportation.

    In a blistering order, Judge Andrew S. Hanen of Federal District Court in Brownsville accused the Justice Department lawyers of lying to him during arguments in the case, and he barred them from appearing in his courtroom.

    He also demanded that Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch provide a “comprehensive plan” within 60 days describing how she will prevent unethical conduct in the future, as well as making sure the department’s Office of Professional Responsibility effectively prevents misconduct among its lawyers.

    He also said that any Justice Department lawyer who wants to appear in a state or federal court in any of the 26 states who filed suit to block Mr. Obama’s executive actions should be required to take an annual three-hour ethics course for the next five years.

    The Justice Department has until June 10, 2016, to comply with the Court's order.

    Click here to read the rest of the article.
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